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Jharkhand’s Singhbhum Prepares for Landmark Elections Amidst Maoist Challenges

Remote Areas Set to Cast Votes for the First Time, Airlifts Ensure Inclusivity

By: Team Pardaphash  Pardaphash Group
Jharkhand’s Singhbhum Prepares for Landmark Elections Amidst Maoist Challenges

Jharkhand, Singhbhum : In a significant development, remote areas within the Maoist stronghold of Singhbhum Lok Sabha constituency in Jharkhand are set to witness voting for the first time in years, or after long intervals. This effort aims to empower residents of Saranda, known as Asia’s densest Sal forest, to exercise their democratic right.

Airlifting Polling Teams and Materials

To ensure accessibility to these remote regions, a total of 118 polling stations will be established. Polling teams and supplies will be air dropped from helicopters, making it possible for residents of areas like Robokera, Binj, Thalkobad, Jaraikela, Roam, Rengrahatu, Hansabeda, and Chhotanagra to participate in the electoral process.

First-Time Voters in Maoist Stronghold

“We are committed to ensuring that no voter is left out… we have identified many areas where polling will be conducted for the first time or after nearly two decades as these locations were badly affected by Maoist insurgency,” stated West Singhbhum Deputy Commissioner cum District Election Officer Kuldeep Chaudhary.

Challenges and Progress

West Singhbhum, despite ongoing challenges with left-wing extremism, has seen progress in establishing security. Operations such as Operation Anaconda have enabled the administration to extend its presence in previously designated “liberated zones,” with 15 new security force camps established.

Special Provisions for Elderly and Disabled Voters

Acknowledging the diverse electorate, arrangements have been made for electors over 85 years of age and persons with disabilities to vote from home. This initiative ensures that individuals like Walter Lakra, a 100-year-old voter from Nandpur area, can comfortably exercise their franchise.

Voter Awareness Initiatives

Innovative voter awareness initiatives are underway, including the installation of a giant sky balloon and the operation of 1,284 ‘Chunav Pathshala’ sessions as part of the Systematic Voter’s Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP) program.

Electoral Landscape

Singhbhum, a reserved constituency for Scheduled Tribes, boasts 14.32 lakh voters, with a significant number being women. The BJP has nominated Geeta Kora, the incumbent MP and former Congress representative, for this seat. Candidates from the I.N.D.I.A bloc are yet to be announced.

Upcoming Elections

Singhbhum Lok Sabha seat includes six assembly constituencies: Seraikela, Chaibasa, Majhganon, Jagnathpur, Manoharpur, and Chakradharpur. Elections in Jharkhand are scheduled in four phases on May 13, 20, 25, and June 1.

In the 2019 general elections, the BJP secured 11 seats, with its ally AJSU winning one. The JMM and Congress each won one seat, setting the stage for an interesting electoral battle in this region.

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